Monday, March 2, 2009

Home.... again.

I was in Florida yesterday…. and Georgia, and North and South Carolina and both Virginia and West Virginia.

Friday I flew to Jacksonville Florida to visit the University of North Florida with my college bound daughter. Lindsay was born in Florida and we prepaid her college tuition before her first birthday on the off chance that she would want to go to school in Florida. The program will refund your investment with a bit of interest if your child decides to attend school outside of Florida (Like Lindsay’s older sister). Unlike her older sister, Lindsay doesn’t think she will have any trouble studying with palm trees on campus.

We’ve looked at several Florida Universities and although she liked them, Lindsay was undecided.
Within hours of arriving on campus I snapped this photo and at that very moment I knew that we were going to be the parents of a UNF freshman next fall. To Lindsay, it felt like home.
The 80 degree temperature didn’t hurt either. Debby helped by text messaging us the weather report from Pittsburgh on Saturday morning “18 degrees and snow flurries” as Lindsay was walking around in her flip flops.

As a parent I prefer to think that Lindsay’s decision was based more on her discussions with the department heads than fact that campus is just 8 miles from the beach. (stop laughing!)

We did check out the beach and even a few quilt shops. We ate lunch on the patio of the restaurant, did some shopping to enjoy the weather and by the time I crawled into bed on Saturday night, I was convinced that it was the best trip possible.
I should have checked the Weather Channel

We intended to fly home yesterday. If you know anything about my travel woes, the following will not surprise you.
All went well until we checked out of the hotel, returned the rental car in a slight drizzle and went to check in for our Delta flight. Due to bad weather, ALL flights were canceled that went through Atlanta. If you have ever flown on Delta, you already know that ALL DELTA flights go through Atlanta. By the time I waited in the mob to get to the customer service desk, they had already graciously re-booked us on a flight that would get us home TUESDAY morning instead of Sunday afternoon.
To fly home I was going to have to re-rent a car (hotels with shuttles were already full) check back into a hotel (at my expense, airlines do not compensate for weather related delays) and wait 30+ hours to return to the airport in hopes that the weather cleared in time for our flight – which had a 6 hour layover in Atlanta.

Lindsay had a huge anatomy test 3rd, 4th, and 5th period today. I have a class tonight and I had the computer with all of the handouts with me. Instead of sitting around hoping for the best, we hit the rental car counter, secured a car, and drove home – through the weather that wouldn’t allow planes to fly. Being from Pittsburgh I am use to ice and snow (people in North Carolina are not, which is why we counted 13+ cars that had lost control and ended up meeting tow truck drivers and state troupers yesterday). Actually, it wasn’t that bad. All 13 hours and 18 minutes through 7 states and every type of weather you can imagine were spent with my daughter that I am going to miss next year. It was a long day, but we are home safe, the college decision is made, and now my biggest concern is how to keep an acute case of “senioritis” from setting in!

1 comment:

Nancy said...

Karen, you missed the cold weather that came in from the bottom of that snow and ice, if you had 80-degree weather to look at UNF! We are now FREEZING (literally) and wishing for some of that warmth back. Ya'll made a good choice, though. UNF is a very respected school here in Jax - they are a huge part of the community. Welcome Lindsay!